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Time Management & Organization While Traveling

Time Management & Organization While Traveling

Have you ever missed the train because your transfer time was too short? Or have you ever jumped on a plane just before the point because everything at check-in just took longer than you thought? Everyone has these unwanted experiences at some point in their lives - either through their own fault, for example because they got up too late, or out of bad luck because the previous train was late and the connecting train didn't wait.

But not only in everyday life, but especially when travelling, something like this can happen to you, since everything usually works differently in other countries. Reaching the destination already provides the first challenge. What's the quickest way to get there? When is the best time to travel? Do I have to pay attention to certain entry requirements? All questions that need to be clarified and are associated with organization. 

Travel offers you so much to compensate for the planning effort involved: It provides you with unique moments and experiences that will accompany and change you forever. They are also one of the most beautiful ways to subconsciously acquire  soft skills that will later be helpful in everyday life and in professional life.

These soft skills include time management and organization. Here we tell you in three stories about our experiences that we made during our own travels and that shaped us a lot in terms of time management and organization. 

Time management and organization  

The soft skills of time management and organization should help you to avoid the situations just mentioned. A trip should relax you and not become a new stressful experience. In order for this to be the case, it should be well planned in advance and all questions clarified. The goal of organizing is to give you an overview of everything.

In addition to what has already been mentioned, this also includes: When does what leave from where? Do I need a visa or certain vaccinations? Is my passport still valid? With so many questions, it can of course happen that you lose the desired overview. Therefore, it is important that you take enough time to prepare everything.

As you can see, time management begins even before the trip. This soft skill is intended to help you to realistically assess the time required and to plan your day or trip accordingly. To do this, you often need to be able to assess yourself.

For example, if you take longer to wake up in the morning, then you need to schedule more time. Or if you know that you run very fast and maybe only need two minutes instead of five for a distance, then this may also affect your schedule. Always keep in mind that your goal is not to rush around, but to enjoy your journey. 

In three stories we take you around the world and show you what happened to us on our first trips and what we learned about organization and time management. 

Maira and Fabio in Eastern Europe

The first testimonial comes from our social media manager Maira as she traveled through several Eastern European countries. She says herself that she is very chaotic, forgets a lot or leaves things behind and often only gets things done at the last second. Regarding the journey through several countries, she had questions after questions in her head: How do I get from A to B? When is my flight, bus or train? Do I need a visa? That's why she had her trip planned at the beginning.

When traveling, especially to longer and distant countries, there is often little choice or only a few alternatives: for example, flights are only available at certain times or accommodation is only available from a certain day. That's why one of Maira's worries was that everything has consequences - especially since her trip spanned more than one country. If she slept in too long, she could miss the bus, then her flight, and finally have no chance of making it to her destination, ultimately affecting plans for the next country.

If she were to lose an important personal item along the way—like her cell phone—it could ruin her entire trip. So she realized that she needed to be extra careful and pay attention to the details at every step.

Today, however, she tells us that exactly this experience of traveling through several countries helped her to really change. “One somehow grows up and becomes responsible through the experience gained.” She now finds it easy to organize all aspects of even complex trips. She really enjoys planning and also notices at work how the ability to organize and schedule properly helps her. 

Eve in Morocco

Our content manager Eva takes us to  Morocco in her experience . Or at least as far as Spain. From here she only knew that she wanted to go to Morocco and that a boat was going there. Her way led her to  Tangier , from where she wanted to take a night train to  Marrakech  .

Arriving in Tangier, there were already many taxi drivers waiting to take you to the train station. However, Eva did not know the regular price for his route and therefore could not assess to what extent the taxi drivers were fair or not. In the end she decided to take a random taxi and, as it later turned out, paid far too much for the short distance.

Arrived at the train station it was only around noon and the night train was supposed to leave late in the evening at 11 p.m. So what to do until then? Time flew by on the beach, shopping and dining, and she still had plenty of time to book accommodation in Marrakech.

Shortly before 11 p.m. she stood at the station and waited for the train. And waited and waited. The train just didn't come. She then realized that there was a time difference between winter and summer time that she hadn't taken into account before. In Germany and Spain it was 11 p.m., but in Morocco it was only 10 p.m.

Luckily, this meant that the train only ran an hour later, so to speak - and not earlier. However, the experience of this trip was: It is always helpful to do some research beforehand about the country you are going to. This also includes, for example: Are there any time differences? Which currency is used? What do I need for entry? Which reservations and train connections can I find and book in advance?

The first day of a trip is usually the most instructive. Our manager Eva still remembers this experience to this day. Every time she meets applicants and employees from other countries through her job, she has to think back on this experience.

Stephen in China

China is a big country with many contrasts. In addition to many modern cities, there are extensive green rice fields, millennia-old traditions and history. In the cities in particular, there is a chaotic hustle and bustle, as many people have to get from A to B at any time - and as quickly as possible. That doesn't work without modern technology. In the rural surroundings, on the other hand, a lot still takes place in a traditional way. 

Our CMO and co-founder Stephan says about himself that he is very optimistic when it comes to time estimation - often maybe TOO optimistic. His trip in  Beijing was coming to an end and the return flight was scheduled to depart at 8 a.m. the next day. So he planned to head to the airport from the hostel around 5am. A route that can normally be mastered without problems.

What he didn't think about, however, was whether taxis were already driving at this early hour, whether he still had enough cash for the trip and whether he had really packed everything. Loaded with luggage, he found at 5 a.m. that the streets were completely deserted and there were no taxis in sight.

In addition, the language barrier made communication difficult. In addition, there was the cold, which should not be underestimated in winter in China, and the problem that the cash was gone and card payments were not accepted by taxi drivers. The whole thing was a stressful situation for him. The whole time Stephan had one important question in his head: What should I do?

At some point he luckily found an ATM – but only with Chinese characters. He panicked even more: If he can't get away in 15 minutes, he'll definitely miss his flight. In the end, however, everything worked out somehow: he found a taxi, was able to pay for it and jumped on the plane at the last second.

This experience shows how important good time management and planning are. Also, having an emergency plan in place and not just relying on luck can be a real life saver in many situations.  

Conclusion

The three stories show very well that proper planning and good information can save you some stress on your journey. But the right planning and organization must first be learned. With every journey you will notice how it becomes easier and easier to think of everything.

Above all, the experience you have gained about all the possible conditions that can influence your plan and yourself will help you. Everything that didn't work so well once, you will do better the next time.

Eva, for example, will probably not forget to look up time differences beforehand and Stephan will perhaps think twice about how optimistically he plans his time. You will feel the same about many situations.

But these skills are not only important when travelling. In everyday life and professional life you will always have to plan your time correctly and organize something. Be it to meet a deadline, show up to work on time or throw a birthday party. The soft skills of time management and organization are therefore among the most important and should be learned by everyone. 

Rudolfus Kikkert
Rudolfus Kikkert Interest In City Tourism

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